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Leftovers, even when dried out and stale or overripe and mushy are ingredients with potential that can be transformed into nourishing treasures and I’m quite certain that after all the winter holidaying and feasting, that you too have all the ingredients handy for this custardy bread pudding, crunchy on the top and creamy on the bottom !

The end result is all a question of the variety of leftovers you have. I had some baguette as well as a sweetened leavened bread called “fouace” which is like a dense brioche with hints of orange blossom, and of course an old pear and banana as you can see in the images, that I fried and caramelized with butter and sugar. And I decided to use up some leftover light cream that I had opened up a week before and added enough partly-skimmed milk to have the required amount of dairy needed. I also added a few dried cranberries and raisins too.

It's sometimes hard to judge the dryness or staleness of breads but if they’re just right, they will absorb about at least an equal amount or double that of their weight in liquid mixture, so before beginning fill up your baking tin(s) about ¾ full with the cubed bread, to get a better idea of how much you’ll need. I ended up using 2 medium tins for 2 loaf-shaped bread puddings, because the mixture was enough.

Be aware that these types of recipes are not fussy nor precise. You can adjust the quantities according to what you have handy, such as using a bit less of the ingredients of the liquid mixture or more cubed bread for a drier and breadier version, but this version is quite creamy and custardy.

Enjoy the return back to work and/or school and increase the enjoyment by making comforting foods for your loved ones … ;)

custardy bread pudding


1,25 kg


breads :

  • 250 grams (4 cups) stale bread & sweetened bread, cut into cubes

liquid mixture (makes 4 cups) :

  • 540 ml (2 ¼ cups) whole milk (or ½ partly skimmed milk + ½ light cream)
  • 175 grams (¾ cup or 3 whole large) eggs
  • 125 grams (½ cup + 2 tbsp) golden cane or white sugar
  • 45 grams (3 tbsp) butter, melted
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) rum (or cognac)
  • 5 ml (1 tsp) vanilla extract
  • 2,5 grams (½ tsp) fine sea salt

fresh & dried fruits (makes 1 ½ cups) :

  • 250 grams (2 cups) very ripe fruits (banana, pear and/or apple), sliced
  • 15 grams (1 tbsp) butter
  • 12,5 grams (1 tbsp) golden cane or white sugar
  • 75 grams (½ cup) dried fruits (raisins, cranberries, etc.)

finishing topping : 

  • 15 grams (1 tbsp) butter, melted
  • 12,5 grams (1 tbsp) golden cane or white sugar
  • 0,5 grams (¼ tsp) grated nutmeg


  • cut the different breads in 2 cm cubes and set aside
  • whisk the whole eggs and sugar in a large bowl together, then add the milk (and cream), then the melted butter, vanilla extract, rum and salt and mix well, then soak the cubes bread in the mixture for 30-45 minutes (the bread will absorb approximately 2 cups of the mixture)
  • preheat the oven to 180°C
  • peel the fresh fruit and cut into smaller pieces and heat up the butter in a frying pan at medium heat and caramelize the fruit with the sugar until tender and set aside (you will end up with 1 cup of cooked fruits)
  • add the caramelized fruit and the dried fruits to the bowl containing the bread and milk mixture and mix well, then pour into 1 large or 2 medium buttered loaf tins (use ½ tbsp of brushed butter for each tin)
  • *note : I used 2 medium loaf tins which measure 30 cm x 10 cm x 6 cm and each can contain a maximum of 5 ½ cups of mixture (or 1 ¼  liters) when filled up to the rim, so I filled both of them up to ¾ full; the total batter for this recipe is approximately 7 ½  cups so you can use just 1 larger loaf tin that can contain at least 8 ½ cups or 2 liters, but you will bake it 5-10 minutes longer …
  • drizzle the top with more melted better, sprinkle with the sugar and nutmeg and bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes maximum, then remove and let cool down completely before inverting onto a work surface and turning back upright and slicing and serving
  • the loaves can be refrigerated for 7-10 days, loosely wrapped in baking paper.